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Germany and the Great War

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Germany and the Great War War Fever War fever gripped Germany, just like it did most other countries in Europe. Most soldiers (on both sides) thought the war would be short, and Kaiser Wilhelm even told his troops before they left that they would be back "before the leaves have fallen" (autumn). The soldiers believed that their smart uniforms would win pretty girls. In Munich, Germany, there was a huge crowd gathered together, singing patriotic songs after hearing that war had started. Anti-War Feelings, Abdication and Armistice These first started with a demonstration in Berlin, 1915, when 500 women protested in front of the Reichstag headquarters. These protesters, however, did not have any clear aims, although they said they wanted their men back from the trenches, and did not want the high food prices. ...read more.


586,000 Germans died in less than a year. By October, even General Ludendorff admitted to the Reichstag that they could not win the war. At the end of October, Germany's naval chiefs ordered their ships out on a "death or glory". Sailors on two ships refused and put out the fires in the boiler rooms, and were subsequently arrested. Following this, the rest of the sailors held a meeting en masse to protest against the arrests, and 8 were shot dead. From then on the mutiny spread rapidly; workers and soldier joined the mutiny and took control of Kiel, and this also happened in neighbouring ports. They (the socialists) set up their own government to run these towns, and from the ports it spread inland. In just 6 days, cities and towns all over Germany were joining in. ...read more.


On December 23rd 1918, around 1,000 hungry and underpaid sailors broke into the Reichstag and held Ebert hostage at gunpoint. Some of Ebert's soldiers joined in the revolt and also demanded more pay. This gave Ebert no option but to accept their terms. On New Year's Eve, the Spartacists renamed themselves the German Communist Party (GCP), and aimed for a communist revolution. This begins the next week, on January 6th 1919. Unfortunately for the GCP, Ebert had gained the support of the Free Corps, who were WWI veterans. They hated communism, and loved brutality, so there was no holding back when 2,000 of them attacked the Spartacists in Berlin on 10th January. There was street fighting for the next 3 days until the Free Corps were victorious. On the 15th of January, they arrested Karl Liebknecht and Rosa Luxemburg, and murdered them after giving them a savage beating. Rosa's body was dumped in a canal. ...read more.

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